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Our Top 5 Apps for International Literacy Day

International Literacy Day is an annual event which is celebrated on September 8th. It's mission is to open up literacy for everyone. The theme for this year's International Literacy Day is 'Literacy in a digital world'.
We can see that digital opportunities are re-defining the way children think and learn and digital technologies are changing the way we work and communicate. The digital landscape provides exciting new opportunities for people to advance their lives - whether that be through access to information and knowledge, the ability to socialise and communicate or for teachers and educators to advance teaching and learning. 
Apps provide opportunities for advancement in all these areas of the digital world and it is vital for young people to be digitally literate in order to take advance of all that is on offer to them. 
Literacy is one area that can be enhanced through the use of apps, so here  are our 5 top apps for promoting literacy:
Sentence Ninja

( iPhone, iPad )

'Sentence Ninja' is a user friendly and appealing app, which is designed to develop children's ability to build sentences and develop sentence structure skills.  It starts from the most basic subject and verb structures through to complex sentences and is therefore, suitable for use with Early Years upwards.  The banks of sentences and the 39 different levels mean that this is an extensive and detailed app which can be used frequently by the same child as they progress through the various stages.

Kids Sound Lab Pro

( iPhone, iPad )

This is a very good app in helping young children who are learning how to read become more proficient in the process of reading and learning the sounds of letters. From visiting the developer’s website it is clear that a lot of research has gone into the production of this app and that the author and consultants on the app are recognised professionals in their areas adding a lot of quality to this app. There has also been research undertaken on the methodology used within the app so the developer is clearly focussed on making the app as appropriate and beneficial as possible.

This is an interactive diary app that encourages young people to document their adventures and their lives in an interactive way whilst improving their communication and literacy skills in the process. It is an excellent app to use during the holiday periods when learning can ‘drop-off’ as it encourages young people to keep a visual and written documentation of their holiday time whilst secretly improving their writing skills. However, this app does not just have to be used in the holiday period as it would work really well as a toy and interactive diary throughout the year. There are also many different features within the app including a sense of challenge where new things become unlocked the more the user plays and uses the app. 

Keyboard Fun

( iPhone, iPad )

Navigating the keyboard is a important literacy - as well as life - skill and, in order for children to become proficient, they should develop  keyboard skills from a young age. There are lots of good keyboard and typing apps, some suitable for children with specific learning challenges such as dyslexia. KeyBoard Fun  is a great app for young children as it not only helps to establish typing skills, but also help with fine motor skills too.  The app has been created by an Occupational Therapist in order to help children with physical or learning disabilities. This is a good app to incorporate into a child’s portfolio of apps as it specifically considers teaching how to type and the location of letters on a keyboard as well as teaching the alphabet. 

Writing Challenge for Kids

( Android, iPhone, iPad )

Foundation Key words app’s content is focused on the high-frequency words, numbers, colours, months and days of the week that children need to learn at a young age.  As well as a flash card mode there are also three word recognition games that can be played.